Worship when you find yourself in times of trouble

Jahaziel told the people in verses 15-17, that God was going to deliver them; “You will not need to fight in this battle.” In verse 17 it says, “Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you.” The result was that Jehoshaphat and all Judah and Jerusalem bowed before the Lord, worshiping the Lord. They reacted to the message from Jahaziel according to their faith in God. God said He would deliver them, that settled it, they believed it. Even in times of trouble and distress, our goal should be to have such a heart and mind that we are ready to worship our Creator.

Their act of worship came after they heard of their deliverance, and how God would fight for them. But such is not always the case; after Job heard the bad news about losing his children, livestock, and servants, it says, “He fell to the ground and worshiped.” Even without any deliverance in sight, Job revealed his righteous character by bowing before the Sovereign Lord of the Universe.

The situation with Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah was one of good news, deliverance was coming! Verse 19 says, they “stood up to praise the Lord God of Israel with voices loud and high.” Verse 21 says, “He appointed those who should sing to the Lord, and who should praise the beauty of holiness.” Singing and praise were certainly a part of their worship. They were saying, “Praise the Lord, for His mercy endures forever.” The people were singing about God, they were praising Him for being a merciful God.

Here is the main point of this article; singing and praising God should be part of our worship today just as it was in the time of Jehoshaphat. Praising God and singing can be done at the same time, through God glorifying songs and the words they contain.

This is one reason why we should use a little discretion when choosing songs for congregational singing. They should be songs that teach truth, theology, and show us the character of God. They should also glorify God and focus on Him, not man or the desires of men; we don’t gather to worship man.

Being mostly of the reformed faith, I like songs that have some meat on the bone, some substance and meaning that I can apply in my life. I prefer songs that reveal God and His attributes to everyone who is present; truth that is clear and concise. Here is one example; the first line of a song written by William Couper in 1774 says, “God works in a mysterious way, His wonders to perform, He plants His footsteps in the sea, and rides upon the storm.” Each verse of the song teaches us something about the character of God.

The spiritual depth of the songs that we sing in our churches today is very important. Even if the preacher isn’t a Christian and can’t preach the Word of God, people can learn eternal truths through the songs we sing. They can learn about sin, the nature of man, creation, heaven, hell, repentance, faith, eternal life and a lot more.

When Jehoshaphat and the people went out to battle singing, “Praise the Lord, for His mercy endures forever,” they were rejoicing in spiritual truth that was being applied in their lives at that time. In Psalm 136, the entire song is based on the truth of God’s enduring mercy.

Are we singing man centered songs that are warm and fuzzy so that we feel good? Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah sang God-centered songs that encouraged the people with spiritual truth. That sounds like a good idea to me.

Comments or questions, contact me at: thoughtsonword@gmail.com


Lyndon Stimeling, of Richfield, has been writing about faith and family for many years. He has self-published three books, “Common Thoughts on The Word” in 2016 and “Eye of a Needle” in 2017 and “Common Thoughts on The Word II” in 2019. He has also had articles published in The Coming Home Journal and local newspapers and has written a children’s book.


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